|Life Science and Health Technologies
||The region hosts top national expertise in life sciences and health technologies. The focus is especially in research and business operation in pharmaceutical and diagnostics industries, as well as functional food and materials technology. Half of the turnover of Finnish medical industry is created in the Turku Region and the Health Turku cluster, coordinated by Turku Science Park Ltd. comprises more than 100 companies as well as universities and research institutes and a hospital district. As an example from the cluster, “Auria Clinical Informatics” is an EU-accredited Digital Innovation Hub and gathers information from many hospital districts to create a “360-degree” view of patient care and represents the first fully operational bio-bank in Finland. As the strongest expertise cluster of the life science field in Finland, and a pioneer in business operations, Health Turku also runs a national Life Science Accelerator and organizes the largest annual drug development and diagnostics industry event, the HealthBIO seminar. Life science and health are spearheads of research also at the universities. Productive and intensive cooperation between research and companies creates an atmosphere for innovation and opportunities for commercialization of products. Due to the global nature of the industry, it is important for the innovation communities to always look for international partnerships. Health Turku actors are active in various networks such as the Council of European BioRegions (CEBR), Euro Bioimaging, ScanBalt BioRegion, and European Diagnostics Cluster Alliance (EDCA). Two of cluster's larger companies, Orion Corporation and PerkinElmer Inc have together with local universities and SMEs recently assembled a New Modalities Ecosystem supported by funding from Business Finland. The new ecosystem is unique multidiscipline collaboration combining high level academic knowledge with drug discovery and development. This Ecosystem combines in a unique way high-level academic research with industrial drug research and development and its aim is to enable improved understanding of disease pathology related to the symptoms and disease progression, better treatments by applying large molecular drugs and diagnostic tools as well as digital wearable patient tools for disease symptom recording. There is continuous dialogue between sectors and actors to find new innovations and enable start-ups and large investment projects alike. The regional life sciences and health technologies targets are supported with networking and joint communications together with information on financing possibilities: allocating financing to the priority when possible and informing about possibilities in the EU programmes.
|Innovative Food Chains
||The region has a reputation of being Finland’s granary and indeed many of Finland’s leading food producers can be found here, sourcing from over 5000 farms producing almost half of Finland’s sugar beet, wheat and pea yields. In livestock, almost 70% of Finland’s chicken farms are found in the region, with also important farms of pigs and sheep. Innovations in aqua culture (recirculating systems in fish farming, fish feed) are also prominent in the region. To follow the regions' circular economy objectives and to create innovative food chains, where no waste occurs, environmental load from food production lessens, terrestrial carbon capture increases and value rises in the whole food chain the regions aims to broaden knowledge, increase the vitality of the countryside and utilize the expertise of the food industry also to create new value and products and thus increase its food based exports. The existing strong foothold in primary production and food industry presents significant possibilities for the region, when combined with the high-level research done in its universities in the fields of chemistry and food. In addition, the region s aims at utilising Key Enabling Technologies, various innovation platforms and joint communications to reach those objectives.
|Blue Growth and Industrial Modernization
||The region hosts a strong, internationally competitive and successful concentration of maritime high technology know-how accounting for around 40% of Finlands' maritime industry jobs, five shipyards, 250 network companies, 20 design agencies, 15 shipping companies, and a turnover of 2,9 billion €. Networks such as Blue Industry Park, Turku Future Technologies and Blue Growth Network promote innovations and collaboration. Region’s main strength and focus in blue growth is in maritime industry - especially cruise ship building and repair, but also increasingly arctic maritime industry.
Southwest Finland aims to be on the high end of global value chains in blue growth and especially maritime industry sector. The high-quality research and education of our universities are in a crucial role. In addition to maritime sector, also other branches of production manufacture are being modernised so that they can answer today’s demands of continuous changes in digitalisation, virtual technologies, data-based services and business models. The Region’s booming automotive industry, which has brought 2000 new jobs since 2017 to the Uusikaupunki Region, is a forerunner in industrial modernisation.
To support positive development within this priority we utilise Key Enabling Technologies, various innovation platforms and joint communications. Structural change that follows from economic growth in blue growth and industrial modernisation also requires actions for example in housing, traffic, services and land use planning, which are tackled in regional planning processes.